Should a 'road tax' be introduced for cyclists?

Haywain

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The latest update of the highway code puts the responsibility of the safety of the pedestrian of other road users. As such cyclists and drivers should (although I accept that they won't always do as they should) be in control of their vehicle in such a way that means that they shouldn't cause the pedestrian harm.
Which is fine but many pedestrians are attached to deeply unpredictable animals on extended leads, and many get deeply offended when a cyclist uses a bell to inform them of their presence.
 
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LSWR Cavalier

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Which is fine but many pedestrians are attached to deeply unpredictable animals on extended leads, and many get deeply offended when a cyclist uses a bell to inform them of their presence.
And many, most where I live, do not take offence.

I slow down, ring my bell in a friendly way, stop if necessary, maybe exchange a few words. I have many friendly encounters with dogs and their keepers. Likewise with children and their keepers.

But there are some problem dogs, as strong as their owners and with minds of their own, grrrrr
 

stuu

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Which is fine but many pedestrians are attached to deeply unpredictable animals on extended leads, and many get deeply offended when a cyclist uses a bell to inform them of their presence.
Not where I live either, more likely to moan if you don't ring your bell. It's amazing how many people don't actually see you when you cycle straight towards them along a shared path directly in their eyeline.
 

nlogax

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Back to the topic, any suggestions that cyclists should pay some sort of vehicle duty or usage tax should be taken as the complete nonsense they are. Absolutely shouldn't (and won't) happen.
 

miami

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Back to the topic, any suggestions that cyclists should pay some sort of vehicle duty or usage tax should be taken as the complete nonsense they are. Absolutely shouldn't (and won't) happen.

I think a 50p per year tax for cyclists for road damage makes sense. Charge 10 years up front as part of the cost of the bike.

However this would only be reasonable if the same tax applies to cars in the same ratio of damage.

Damage to the road is x^4, which would put a typical 2 ton car paying about £16,000 per year, or about £2.50 a mile.
 

GusB

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I think a 50p per year tax for cyclists for road damage makes sense.
50p per year seems like a good deal, and I'd be happy to pay that regardless of whether I spent any of that time on a bike :) No doubt the anti-lycra brigade will be out in force soon to dispute my views :)
 

Bletchleyite

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50p per year seems like a good deal, and I'd be happy to pay that regardless of whether I spent any of that time on a bike :) No doubt the anti-lycra brigade will be out in force soon to dispute my views :)

The cost of collecting 50p per year would exceed the income. Only practical way to collect something that low would probably be to calculate the average lifetime of a bike and average price and increase VAT on bikes accordingly.
 

miami

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The cost of collecting 50p per year would exceed the income. Only practical way to collect something that low would probably be to calculate the average lifetime of a bike and average price and increase VAT on bikes accordingly.

Hence you pop it on as a £5 tax at purchase.

It would only be proportionate if car tax was £2.50 a mile though. With 25p/mile tax, or about £1500-£2000 a year, it would be a 5p a year bike tax.
 

AndrewP

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My view is that they shouldn't but their levels of responsibility should be increased with the following being legal requirements:
  • HiViz with reflective strips
  • Visible registrations for accountability
  • Third party insurance commensurate to the level of damage that can be caused
Generally speaking most cyclists are pretty good but there are some idiots same as any other form of transport.

I rarely get problems as a driver and find more as a pedestrian where some think i should dive into bushes or even go onto the road to let them past (no chance until its safe and convenient)

I would like to see cyclists made to use cycle lanes but until enough are actually fit for purpose (and some seem to have been designed by a drunk with a can of road marking paint!) this is simply not realistic and would make things even worse.

I also believe there should be special Jag only lanes for some reason too :D
 

miami

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HiViz with reflective strips

Only if cars have HiViz with reflective strips

Visible registrations for accountability

Once car drivers are held accountable

Third party insurance commensurate to the level of damage that can be caused

It is estimated that there are around 1 million uninsured drivers in the UK, perhaps once the police have a grip on that we can look at lesser problems
 

LOL The Irony

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Only if cars have HiViz with reflective strips
All new cars are required to be fitted with daytime running lights and all cars have been required to be fitted with rear reflectors since before I was even conceived. I think they have that visibility thing covered.
Once car drivers are held accountable
That's a police issue. The laws are there, just not properly enforced.
It is estimated that there are around 1 million uninsured drivers in the UK, perhaps once the police have a grip on that we can look at lesser problems
There will always be uninsured drivers on the road. Either via forgetfulness or blatant disregard for the law.
 

miami

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All new cars are required to be fitted with daytime running lights and all cars have been required to be fitted with rear reflectors since before I was even conceived. I think they have that visibility thing covered.

Bikes have also required reflectors.

No reaon that cars shouldn't be as visible as https://s1.cdn.autoevolution.com/im...-muscles-for-french-law-enforcers-34681_1.jpg

I do note that "Fog Grey" is the most popular colour of car

That's a police issue. The laws are there, just not properly enforced.

Thus no point in adding more workload to the police

There will always be uninsured drivers on the road. Either via forgetfulness or blatant disregard for the law.

A far larger problem than the few uninsured cyclists there are
 

LOL The Irony

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Bikes have also required reflectors.

No reaon that cars shouldn't be as visible as https://s1.cdn.autoevolution.com/im...-muscles-for-french-law-enforcers-34681_1.jpg

I do note that "Fog Grey" is the most popular colour of car
The person on the bike is being asked to make themselves more visible, not the bike, since you all like being technical. If you don't wish to wear protective items, you're not only breaking the highway code, but also won't have my sympathy when you're run over.
Thus no point in adding more workload to the police
Well they don't enforce your wearing of reflective items either.
A far larger problem than the few uninsured cyclists there are
Knife crime is also a far larger problem than firearms crime, but I don't see everything into firearms offences being dropped and all the resources put into knife crime. Just because there are bigger problems, doesn't mean smaller problems should be ignored.

Everything should be a give and take, however you guys want to take and don't seemingly want to give.
 

LSWR Cavalier

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Obviously not, cyclists who value their safety avoid motor roads as far as possible.

I do favor taxing €-bike$, they are motorised.

If cycle sellers were not obsessed with money they could advise older and weaker cyclists to upgrade to simple light cycles that are easier to propel. Worked for me, makes cycling much easier, much less maintenance too.
 

biko

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  • HiViz with reflective strips
  • Visible registrations for accountability
This is a very car-centric reasoning and a way of making cycling very unattractive. Cyclists are not inherently unsafe that they should be extremely visible. Cars are unsafe to other road users and it would be quite disproportionate to force people using a clean mode of transport, which is pretty safe to other road users, to make themselves very visible to the more dangerous mode.

I rarely get problems as a driver and find more as a pedestrian where some think i should dive into bushes or even go onto the road to let them past (no chance until its safe and convenient)
That’s probably the result of the bad cycle infrastructure in the UK. This isn’t a problem in the Netherlands for example.
I would like to see cyclists made to use cycle lanes but until enough are actually fit for purpose (and some seem to have been designed by a drunk with a can of road marking paint!) this is simply not realistic and would make things even worse.
Exactly my previous point: good infrastructure will reduce the need to bother pedestrians. In the Netherlands cycling on a cycle path is mandatory without problems.
 

The Ham

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This is a very car-centric reasoning and a way of making cycling very unattractive. Cyclists are not inherently unsafe that they should be extremely visible. Cars are unsafe to other road users and it would be quite disproportionate to force people using a clean mode of transport, which is pretty safe to other road users, to make themselves very visible to the more dangerous mode.

Indeed, how much hi-viz should a cyclist be required to have; given that this wasn't enough:


(Link to story of a police car which was hit at the side of a dual carriageway)

Nor was this:
https://twitter.com/DerbyshireRPU/status/1356374227746770945?t=9G6io1F8mFz6nTso-691qA&s=19

(Link to Tweet showing a car having crashed into a road maintenance vehicle, the ones with the big fishing arrows which had advanced signs of the roadworks)
 

LOL The Irony

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Indeed, how much hi-viz should a cyclist be required to have; given that this wasn't enough:


(Link to story of a police car which was hit at the side of a dual carriageway)

Nor was this:
https://twitter.com/DerbyshireRPU/status/1356374227746770945?t=9G6io1F8mFz6nTso-691qA&s=19

(Link to Tweet showing a car having crashed into a road maintenance vehicle, the ones with the big fishing arrows which had advanced signs of the roadworks)
People being inattentive whilst in charge of any vehicle (including bicycles) can lead to situations like this.
 

Meerkat

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People being inattentive whilst in charge of any vehicle (including bicycles) can lead to situations like this.
Blimey, you must cycle fast to do that much damage to a police car!
seriously though, a mate of my dad did ride into a parked car, went through the rear window, and bled out on the back seat.
Not keen on high viz for cyclists - drivers shouldn’t get to rely on high vis, they should be looking harder. And anything that restricts the ability for people to jump on a bike in whatever they are wearing restricts cycle use and is therefore harmful. Apart from the Lycra lot - buying clothes specifically to cycle in and then choosing all black is criminally negligent IMO.
 

LOL The Irony

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Blimey, you must cycle fast to do that much damage to a police car!
You do indeed.
seriously though, a mate of my dad did ride into a parked car, went through the rear window, and bled out on the back seat.
Which just proves my point about being inattentive whilst in charge of vehicle. It's not just others you can harm, but yourself as well. Some other posters appear to be trying to ignore these very simple principles for whatever reason. Either because they need it spelling out in black and white or they're trying to initiate a gotcha moment because I've expressed a dislike for cycling (of which, it was a very specific sect, but why listen to facts?).
Not keen on high viz for cyclists - drivers shouldn’t get to rely on high vis, they should be looking harder.
I disagree. Pedestrians are encouraged to cross at designated areas so they're less likely to be hit by a vehicle. Also, the highway code states you must wear some high visibility items.
And anything that restricts the ability for people to jump on a bike in whatever they are wearing restricts cycle use and is therefore harmful.
Well then we should make all modes of transport easier to just hop in and go, including cars. If everyone just followed the rules of the road, this thread wouldn't exist and all road users would coexist together with few issues.
 

Meerkat

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Also, the highway code states you must wear some high visibility items.
You sure about that?
Well then we should make all modes of transport easier to just hop in and go, including cars
You can already jump in a car in whatever you are wearing, you don't even have to consider the weather (though you probably should). In fact you have more chance of getting away with wearing nothing in a car than on a bike.
 

Bletchleyite

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How are you going to attach those to a bike, how are you going to prevent fakes when they can't manage that with cars, and what will this achieve anyway?

Switzerland used to have small bike registration plates (alongside mandatory third party insurance these were abolished about 10 years ago as being a waste of money and not worthwhile) and they just attached to the back of the luggage carrier or mudguard if fitted, or otherwise to the seat post.

They looked like this:

Swiss bicycle registration plate - from licenseplatemania.com

The sticker is proof of payment of the annual insurance, which cost about £10, most of which paid for the administration of the scheme. As expected there were hardly any claims, because cyclists very rarely cause damage to property. I don't know what 17 means, it doesn't mean 2017 as the scheme was abolished in either 2011 or 2012 (I forget).

But back to the general point, if a country that had these things thought they had no merit and abolished them, who on earth would bother starting having them?
 
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Bletchleyite

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People who want to cut the cycle rate from its already very low level.

It is certainly true that there is one particular poster who seeks to do that, but fortunately the Government disagrees with him and so it won't happen, and his eyes will have to continue to be offended by the sight of people enjoying a healthy, active mode of transport or leisure while he seethes behind the wheel during his Sunday drive.
 

LOL The Irony

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You sure about that?
Yes. Pedestrians are even required to wear some at night.

From the copy in front of me and online;
Clothing. You should wear
  • a cycle helmet which conforms to current regulations, is the correct size and securely fastened
  • appropriate clothes for cycling. Avoid clothes which may get tangled in the chain, or in a wheel or may obscure your lights
  • light-coloured or fluorescent clothing which helps other road users to see you in daylight and poor light
  • reflective clothing and/or accessories (belt, arm or ankle bands) in the dark.
 

The Ham

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People being inattentive whilst in charge of any vehicle (including bicycles) can lead to situations like this.

Indeed they can, however all that proves is that whilst it's beneficial to ensure that a cyclist is wearing clothing which tries to stand out for drivers the wearing of hi-viz isn't going to stop every incident and there comes a point where you get into diminishing returns.

If a car driver can't see a police car or a highways maintenance vehicle, they certainly aren't going to see a cyclist regardless of what they wear. As such the enforcement of hi-viz by law isn't really going to be that beneficial compared to the cost (both to the individual and to the state through enforcement).

Of the three times I've come off my bike, there's only one where hi-viz may have helped, as the other two were down to slipping on ice.

Yes. Pedestrians are even required to wear some at night.

From the copy in front of me and online;

"You should" is not the same as must.
 

Bletchleyite

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Yes. Pedestrians are even required to wear some at night.

No, they're not. The Highway Code contains musts and shoulds. Only the musts are required by law. Shoulds are recommendations.

With regard to hi-vis, you as a driver cannot assume that it will be worn, because the thing in the road might not be a cyclist. You must drive so you can stop in the distance you can see to be clear; if conditions are such that you can't see very well, like dark or fog, you must slow down until you can. If you are unable or unwilling to do that, please hand in your driving licence before you kill somebody.

It is not OK to hit anything with a car, regardless of what it is or why it is there.
 

LOL The Irony

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"You should" is not the same as must.
I'm sure the police officer attending to a bunch of runaway farm animals would be happy that's the case. It says you should, so you ideally, for the benefit of all other road users, should. I think I'll take an untrained horse on the road if that's the attitude.
 

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